these days, the phrase “bad attitude” gets tossed around quite often. You use it regularly and have hardly thought about what it actually means. It's just that the manicurist has some bad temper when you asked her to repeat her fingers. Your little sister is in a bad mood when you were asked to hang up the phone during a conversation. Your boss has a bad attitude because the deal doesn't go through. With the ease that the “bad attitude” label applies these days, it’s unlikely you catch yourself saying, “I’m in a bad mood today.” Even though it's something you rarely consciously admit to yourself, your own bad attitude is more effective than that of anyone else around you. Being in the company of people with a bad attitude is something you can choose to do. It's like an elevator that stinks when you enter. You suffer for a couple of floors, but then you're gone. And soon enough, you will be able to erase the unpleasant meeting from your mind. Bad attitude to work is different. You don't notice or pay attention to the stink because it's yours. And while you are able to identify and manage your bad attitude, you are trapped in it, unconsciously to yourself. So it's not an exercise in semantics where you're trying to put your finger on what exactly you call a bad attitude. It's more of a mindfulness exercise to notice when you're in your own stinky cloud and not let it become your regular company.
What If You Think You Know More Than Anyone Else?
Coming into a project, team, conversation, with the feeling that you are always right and that you know everything is a sign of a bad attitude. You can really be the most prepared and have in-depth knowledge - that's not the point. In fact, being the smartest person in the room is often one of the coping mechanisms we often resort to using. know more than anyone else that in this mindset, you are not open to feedback or any new information that might be constructive about what you are trying to achieve. Your focus is on proving others wrong without giving a chance to the possibility that others might actually make sense. Back to this manicure that messed up the fingers. She will be adamant, pointing out that the legs are crooked, instead of admitting that she is a professional in this setting, did something wrong. With puffing and puffing, she will repeat your nails. But she may never see exactly where she made a mistake. You can be the same when you think you know more than anyone else. Catch your bad mood when you dismiss part of the feedback, when you defend familiar roads, and when you discredit (even just for yourself) someone else's experience as invalid. At this point, not only you, it is impossible to cooperate. In these thoughts, you block any opportunities for your own growth. With the need to maintain your know-it-all status, you've become tough and ignorant of things that can often benefit you.
From know is all knowing nothing
Once you've found that you're in your usual "know more than anyone else" mode, getting out of your stinky attitude starts with acknowledging that sometimes things can actually be wrong. And it may have nothing to do with facts, figures and dates. If anything, you are always there with Rev. It's about accepting that other people may experience the same situations in a different way than you, and therefore have their own truth, also different from yours. Preparing for infidels means realizing that everything you know is actually a reflection of your experience, not someone else's. Whether it's a personal relationship or a business, you can be both right about your own way of seeing things and wrong about others at the same time. Realizing that this makes you much more open, cooperative and tolerant. And it's enough to change the attitude a little!
What If You Think It Won't Be Until It Begins?
Imagine doing your best versions of the oka roll and depressingly ask yourself: “Why am I going through this?” You are about to start something that, in your book, has already failed. Putting an accident verdict on things, people or events before they even had a chance is a bad attitude! Here are some examples. It seems to you that meeting with your colleagues will be a waste of time before you go to him. Since you are writing it mentally and in a conscious way, you can pretend to be involved in going through your own plans. You suspect that your partner will forget your birthday and you decide to spare yourself the potential disappointment. You book the restaurant in advance, so no nasty surprises. Anticipating failure is a natural defense. Something doubtful is going to happen and preparing for the worst is the way to control it. However, she has a back-up plan for the worst-case scenario, which is something of a feeder-like failure in her head before it begins. The former gives some room for things to work out well, with Plan B in the background. The latter has already placed the whole enterprise in the grave. No matter what fate it may be, you have already decided that it will be grim. If you decide to book a restaurant so that your partner doesn't forget your birthday, you have ripped him out of the establishment he has in this situation. What's more, you literally encourage him to disappoint you next time. You do not believe in him from the very beginning - so why convince you otherwise? And, as you know-it's all mode can kick in here (see above), you can accidentally bring the situation to a halt, just to prove you're right. Double whammy for bad attitude!
Waiting for agency denial
A bad attitude, not believing in people, is rooted in past bad experiences. While doing what others let you down is just bittersweet. You literally let your past dictate your future. You state others that there is no way for them to please you because you have already decided that it will be a failure. You also state yourself to only notice disappointments, because that's all you remember. Turning it all on requires letting others make their own mistakes when they make them rather than trying to anticipate them. Giving an agency people a job and taking them in good faith is believing that they are doing their best. With this faith, you will be present to see that instead of falling into a graveyard of failures that never happened.
What if you criticize invalid?
Let's say your team sends out a presentation and you see every paragraph that doesn't line up very well. Or maybe your friend tells you about her mysterious new friend and you find all the inconsistencies in his behavior. Attentive to detail and analytical, one thing you do very well is find holes in anything. Nothing that doesn't sit well lets the eye through. While your forensics skills have come in handy on more than one occasion, they've probably led you into one particular trap: you can critique something in order to completely destroy it. At first, this may seem like fun. Because I look at you without letting a single defect pass! But then you just can't stop. The more you learn, the more your inner detective gets both enraged, but the idea of finding more also sparked. This continues as you stand in the middle of the ruins, escalate. "Don't others see what I'm dealing with right now?" Bad attitude! You've just torn something to pieces without building anything back. Why is it in a bad mood when you are just pointed out everything that is wrong with an idea? Well, your role in this project is destructive, not constructive. For someone you've received feedback - everything you've done is invalidating that person's vision (even for a good reason) which, without alternative vision, leaves that person aimless. For yourself, you just wasted your time looking for the negative. Without balancing it with the positive and suggesting ways it might work, the end result of your efforts is yet another confirmation of what people do hacks, never mind, let alone help.
From destructive to constructive
The only way to fix such a bad attitude caused by Detective Syndrome is to make it a rule that whenever you criticize, you offer an alternative. Literally! If you don't like the verdict in the presentation, they suggest rewriting it! Do not like the proposed strategies, instead of dwelling on the problems with the search - found how the problems can be solved. A good attitude is when you are not a critic, you are also a creator. This way, instead of being a party pooper to be avoided, you will have someone to come by for decisions. You are constructive is important not only for the people around you. This is the most important thing for you. So between the things that criticize you to death and the things that have helped you move forward, the balance will always be on the latter. Even after all the sadistic fun you're deriving from designating your teammate's project to Carnage, after all, you're the one who moves this project to the next level without throwing it in the trash.
What if everything around you is a problem?
There is a saying that:
“If everything around you is a problem, you are a problem.”
Finding the culprit is a common strategy for masking a bad attitude. But this is the exact time when you should turn to yourself. If others don't have a clue what they're doing, this might be a good time for you to explore your beliefs that you know more than anyone else. If you feel like things are doomed to fail before they even start, it's probably your desire to control everything by taking the best of you. AND, if you find more problems than solutions, it may be that the real problem starts with you. Identify your bad attitude before you point it out to someone else and you're halfway through turning it around. Then get ready to be wrong, give people ownership of their mistakes, and offer alternatives if you criticize, and that's a much better attitude!
Learn more about building a successful relationship
- Signs you need to mend your relationship (and how to do it)
- How to Cultivate a Mindset and Succeed in What You Want
- How Your Attitude Determines Your Success